tv CNN Newsroom CNN February 19, 2013 12:00pm-12:30pm EST
new york post," no shrinking violets here. one thing is sure as this case goes on, it will remain interesting. >> fireworks. >> thank you for being with us. newsroom international comes up next. welcome to newsroom international, i'm suzanne malveaux. >> she is. i'm michael holmes. >> we 25i you around the world in 60 minutes. we begin with south africa. everybody is talking about this, of course, oscar pistorius breaking down in court, tells a packed courtroom that he shot and killed his girlfriend but he says he didn't mean to. track star was so upset at his bail hearing today he broke down every time anyone mentioned reeva steenkamp's name. the judge up graded the charge against him to premeditated murder. we're hearing pistorius's version of what happened that tragic night in his own words, about a minute away. also the shooter in the
sandy hook elementary school killings may have gotten his motivation from the norway massacre in 2011. adam lanza saw himself in direct competition with anders breivik. breivik hunted down and shot 69 people at a youth camp you'll remember after killing 8 others in a bombing in downtown oslo. a spokesman for connecticut state police calls the report inaccurate speculation at the moment. and this in belgium, thieves making off with $50 million worth of diamond. eight masked robbers driving two cars on to a tarmac at brussels airport stealing those diamonds from a cargo hold on a plane and getting away. the gems were en route from the antwerp world diamond center in zurich in switzerland. now back to the courtroom in south africa. that is where oscar pistorius cried uncontrollably today. the judge had to stop the bail hearing, ask him to get ahold of
himself. this is the first time pistorius told his side of the story, that he shot and killed reeva steenkamp accidentally because he thought she was an intruder. but because he was so distraught, his lawyer actually had to read the statement for him. here's what the lawyer read in court, a part of the larger affidavit that was filed in this case. listen. >> i am an adult male, south african citizen and applicant in this application and seek to be released on bail. i make this affidavit of my own free will and have not been influenced. contents is true and correct. i failed to understand how i could be charged with murder. let alone premeditated murder. because i had no intention to kill my girlfriend. i have been informed that i have been accuse kd of murder. i deny the accusation. nothing can be further from the truth, that i planned the murder of my girlfriend. i have no intention to relocate as i love my country.
i deny that i committed murder in the strongest point, even though i don't have to, i want to deal with these allegations. reeva had bought me a pren for valentine's day. i loved her. i in he she felt the same way. on february 13th, reeva would have gone out with her friends, me with mine. she wanted to stay at home. i was watching tv. my legs were off. she was doing yoga. at the end of the evening we got into bed. i'm acutely aware of people gaining entry into homes to commit crime. i've received death threats. i sleep with my 9 millimeter under my bed. i woke up to close the sliding door and heard a noise in the bathroom. was scared and didn't switch on the light. i got my gun and moved towards the bathroom. i screamed at the intruder
because i did not have my legs on, i felt vulnerable. i fired shots through the bathroom door and told reeva to call police. i walked back to the bed and realized reeva was not in bed. then it dawned on me, it could be her in there. i kicked the door open, called paramedics and complex security. i tried to carry her downstairs for help. i tried to help her but she died in my arms. i am mortified. with the benefit of hindsight i realize that reeva went to the bathroom when i went to close the balcony door. i trust the south african legal system and the facts will show that i did not murder reeva. i believe the forensics evidence will prove what i am saying. i used a cricket bat to break open the toilet door. i am an international sports star. i will not evade my trial. after the shooting i did not flee the scene. i remained until the police
arrive. i don't know any of the witnesses in this matter and i won't interfere with any witnesses. my continued incarceration will be of no benefit to the state. release would not disturb the public order. >> so today the judge he didn't make a decision on whether or not to grant bail at that hearing. the prosecutor said they needed more time to review the affidavit, read them in court. obviously, michael you and i have been reading this ourselves. there are quite a number of inconsistencies as well. when he talks about some of the specific points. we want to talk more about what we are hearing on this emotional day in court. >> we'll get into that, too. he says he kicked the door in, then he said he used a cricket bat. we're learning more about his version of what happened. >> paul kallen, legal contributor and criminal defense attorney, with us from new york and also robyn curnow, following the case from johannesburg. you take a look at the affidavit here and there are inconsistencies when he talks about this case. michael bringing up a specific
one about kicking the door down but he didn't have his legs. that he was in one place of the house, that he screamed out his girlfriend's name, didn't hear anything but it seems like she would answer if in fact she was in the bathroom. did you see anything wrong with this story? >> it's just -- it's loaded with inconsistencies. i mean, first of all he gets out of bed to close the door to the balcony. presumably he doesn't have a gun on him at that point. he has to go back underneath the bed to get his gun. by that time, why wouldn't he have seen his girlfriend in the bed if she were there? if she wasn't there, of course he would know she was in the bathroom. when you get to the bathroom, why is the door locked? why does he have to knock the door in? it sounds more like you have a girlfriend fleeing to the bathroom, locking herself inside and maybe an angry individual outside the door finally firing four shots through the door. so i think the affidavit doesn't
make out much of a defense for him but it is something they're going to try to hang their hats on. >> paul, when it comes to the court, the interesting thing in south africa, too, particularly at this point, of course, it's just a judge, there is no trial by jury in south africa, which is interesting, too. does he sort of break down in court which one presumes would happen at tile as well, was it getting more credibility or how does that play, especially given the fact you're dealing with the judge. >> i think ittive goods him less credibility and i'll tell you why. the breakdown in court makes you wonder about his emotional stability. there were press reports by the way about him tweeting to some of his followers a while back that he had gone into full combat mode when he came back to his house one day and he find out that the washing machine was going. he thought it was a burglar. he seems to be a little bit emotionally unstable, a little too fast to reach for the gun. so i don't know that the crying in court is going to help him with the judge.
>> and robyn, tell us how people responded when he broke down in the courtroom. did that seem to weigh or give credence to his story, feel for him, even believe him? >> you know, actually contradicts what your guest is saying. a lot of people don't understand the context of living in south africa. people, myself included, have high walls with electric fences, beams, we have armed responses, panic buttons in our houses. the palpable fear that you feel when you go to bed at night is real. this is a nation of paranoid people, because the reality is, is that more often than not, the statistics speak for themselves, you are sometimes or very likely to be confronted by armed men coming into your house. if you have money you will do everything you can to barricade yourself and still that doesn't
help. we've had lots of stories of people in these gated communities being attacked or murdered in their houses. if you understand the fear and the context of this, you know that is why shooting blindly into the dark might sound a lit strange but actually it's something many south africans would do and it's a valid point, whether he was ration, there's no doubt he didn't think first. i think you have to put that into perspective. people are scared when they go to sleep in this country. >> robyn, one would imagine this sort of testimony would ring true with people on a jury. there is no jury in this case. tell us about the system, first of all, and how this is likely to play out into that system. >> the first hurdle is this bail application, this bond application, which is obviously say laying the foundation of what we can expect from the state's evidence. they seemed very confident and
managed to convince the magistrate that you know, premeditated murder was a possibility. the magistrate saying he was open to be -- his mind to be changed. first of all, we've got to -- oscar's defense has to prove, the onus is on them. you have no legs, you are vulnerable. when you're in kid you're particularly vulnerable. i think that will play into it. in terms of trial, that's months away, maybe at the end of the year. if he doesn't get bail, oscar pistorius is facing many, many months in a south african jail as he waits for this process to unwind. >> in the meantime, so many people are dissecting what they think happened in that house between that couple. it really is an extraordinary story and it's popular around the whole world. people are debating, trying to
figure out how a figure like this, a hero so many around the world, how this happened. >> robyn curnow, thank you for your contributions there. >> reeva steenkamp was being mourned in her hometown,port po elizabeth. later her uncle broke down when speaking to reporters. >> as a family, there's only one thing missing, reeva. i don't think i ever will get over it. with the lord's prayers and a statement she stood for, abuse against women. >> the day before she was killed steenkamp had come out in support of an event called black friday, a nationwide effort to
draw attention to violence against women. >> there were tense moments for nasa. ground control lost all communications on the international space station. there were six crew members on board the iss, including two americans. the crew's commander has said that everybody on board is safe, they're doing well. we want to talk about the details, all of this, bring in chad myers and nasa public affair affairs josh byerly. how is this even possible? >> i think we've all done this, you think you're upgrading your computer and all of a sudden when you turn it back on it doesn't work anymore. the upgrade didn't take. when they were trying to get the soft wiware to a new level, the level didn't turn back on. they lost communication. we might as well talk to josh. he was right there. >> josh, what haed? what did occur. >> chad's got it exactly right. we were doing a routine update on board the software on the
computer. there's a primary computer and backup computer. they swapped over to the backup computer so upload the primary one and we lost communication with the space station. we send command and voice up to our tracking and data relay satellite system, satellites which are 22,000 miles out in space. they beam that back down to the space station. we're down to communicating with the space station only over russian ground stations once every hour and a half, there's another pass coming up in about ten minutes which this is is the same way they used to do it in the 1960s with jim and i and apollo and things such as that. >> what happens in nasa when this happens and it's sort of of a hello, hello? or do you kind of expect this could be just a little phillip in the computer? >> obviously we need to talk to the station and kmaned it and have control of it and things
such as that. it's not a panicked mood that takes over mission control, anybody who's been here has seen that. these guys have procedures to do this and the crew has procedures they talk to each other when they get the chance and make sure the crew is aware of what to do and working through the steps to get it back up and running. >> josh, have you had a chance to talk to anybody on board? are they doing okay, were they freaked out? >> the station did pass over russia and they talked to kevin ford who is the commander and the first thing he said is the crew was doing fine and the station is stable, which, of course, is our main concern. and you know, they had a quick chat for ten minutes to talk about the procedures that needed to be done. that's what they're working toward. again, we have another pass in about five minutes, we'll talk to them again. >> chad myers again. this computer was only for communications. this thing never was really going to put the iss in any danger by not working, right? >> no. it's a command and control computer. it's the computer that allows
everything else on board the station to work and be monitored and for us to send commands. obviously there's lots of computers on board, lots of redundancy. we do need the ability to bush buttons here in houston and command the station and talk to the crew. that's the computer that allows us to do it. >> okay, josh, appreciate it. thank you. here's more of what we're working on for newsroom international. the royal baby bump. that's right. katherine, duchess of cambridge out in public. everybody wants a picture. they want to see it. later on, hacked by china's army? we'll tell you how they hit everybody from "the new york times" to burger condition that's what some people are saying anyway. that's after the break. nice! [ earl ] see for yourself. get the samsung galaxy s ii on t-mobile's nationwide 4g network. walmart.
[ male announcer ] engine light on? come to meineke now for a free code scan read and you'll say...my money. my choice. my meineke. welcome back to cnn newsroom international. hear the stories making news round the world right now. duchess of cambridge making her first appearance since announcing her pregnancy, first public appearance. people around the world were watching for signs of the baby bull. they spoke at a charity she supports.
she said she was nervous about being a mom. she's due to give birth in july. >> while everybody has been watching the american airlines and u.s. air merger, there have been big changes at delta. that's a place you and i fly out of a lot. pay attention. >> it's affecting your frequent flyer miles. delta calls them sky miles. the biggest change is that your status will be based on how much you spend, not just how many miles you fly? >> yes, we're spending a lot though, i think. >> well, cnn. >> don't tell our bosses. delta telling travelers they'll have to spend a minimum of 2,500 bucks a year just to reach the bottom wrung of the program. >> we'll see how that pans out. we're following president obama building his new national security team. world events, including those in
syria, not waiting for the white house and congress to get their act together. there's an estimated 70,000 people who have been killed in the uprising in syria two years ago. administration officials there revisiting what they can possibly do about this, including whether or not they're even going to arm the rebels and how are they going to get rid of bashar al assad. >> wolf blitzer joins us from washington. the president doesn't even have the new security team in place. the senate hasn't confirmed chuck hagel for secretary of defense yet, david petraeus' replacement, john brennan and secretary of state john kerry, he's still finding his way around the state department. what are they leaning to in terms of arming the sunni rebels. >> the president is still pretty much leaning totally against directly arming the rebels with u.s. military equipment. they're getting nonlethal aid, some computers, phones,
humanitarian assistance, several hundred million dollars to the rebels. but as far as weapons are concerned, i think the boobama administration, the president of the united states, together with the european allies, they're reluctant to do it, afraid those weapons might get into the wrong hands. some of the rebels might be affiliated with al qaeda, for example. if you provide weapons to some of these groups they could wind up endangering potentially israeli aircraft in the vicinity. the airment in favor of it is, bashar al assad's regime has been brutal. hundreds of thousands refugees, thousands dead. more than a million misplaced. the president rejected the advice of his top national security advisers a few months ago, including hillary clinton
and general david petraeus and leon panetta. i don't see a great appetite right now to reverse that rejection. >> and, wolf, how does the administration counter from iran as well as russia that they are completely willing to supply arms to the rebels here? and you have at the same time an american public here who looks at the tragedy in syria, says, okay, you have to do something here but there is no appetite, very little appetite among american people to get involved in another armed conflict. >> you make a good point. the iranians are assisting bashar al assad's regime, revolutionary guard forces equipment, military hardware, stuff like that, hezbollah is from lebanon is as well. the russians are continuing to sell military equipment to the syrian regime of president bashar al assad. the weapons are coming in and clearly bolstering him. this is a brutal, brutal battle under way right now. and at least as of now, i see no end in sight. one of the problems that the
president has had in terms of arming the rebels directly providing military equipment to the rebels is the u.s. and the europeans did that in libya and to a certain degree, they're paying a price for that. some of those weapons wound up in the hands of the wrong guys, if you will. and there's a lot of instability in libya as a result of that, some of the weapons have even gone out of libya. there's a certain reluctance to get involved once again in this kind of arming of the rebels in what is a civil war. >> absolutely, wolf. congress, there really isn't an appetite for members of congress when you talk about the big fight over the budget battle and where you spend the money to put more money inside of syria. >> we can have a whole debate. thanks very much, wolf. we have a debate about the criticism of 70,000 people dead, places like congo. >> rwanda. >> the old saying syria is not
libya. there are all sorts of geopolitical forces at play there. >> even the u.s. representative to the u.n., susan rice, does not believe we should arm the syrians. she was the one that gave the okay for libya. >> they're very different neighborhoods. there's a lot of nuance in all of this, even though people are dying by the hundreds every single day. let's move on. an unspeakable possibility, adam lanza, was he trying to compete with the worst mass shooting in norway's history? >> a new report says that could have been the motive for the school massacre in connecticut. we'll dig deeper after this quick break. mine was earned in djibouti, africa, 2004.
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if you'll remember. the hartford courant spoke to family members about the motives. listen. >> what we found was that he went from being a troubled boy, a boy who was shy and isolated, to being an even more distant and remote young man. a person who continued to retreat into the shadows and was never able to find a place in the world. what we're trying to understand, as you just reported, is how do those issues that we understand from talking to people who knew his mother tie in with these other things we're learning about violent video games and the norwegian killings, to lead to sandy hook on that day? >> so the "hartford courant" says they found an article about breivik in lanza's room.
>> if there's an indication he was trying to copycat in terms of the death toll, that's his motivation. there's nothing -- no similarities in terms of the motivation to breivik, that's for sure. his was purely a political act. he was, whether you think he's insane or not, he went after what he saw as a pro-government gathering on that ilan of -- island of victoria, the youth of the country getting together. he hated the government. pe thought the government was too pro-immigration. that's what he was about. lanza trying to get on the coat tails of that just seems sick. >> what do we know about breivik? lanza was troubled, socially isolated. there were guns in the house. there's a question about why that was the case? but did he have social problems, deveen